The Path of the Entrepreneur Is a Toll Road

What Drives YouSometimes it’s worth paying to take the toll road. It’s often faster, less crowded, has nicer rest stops, and smooth, wide roads. The value it adds is worth the price.

The reason it’s less crowded is more people prefer to take the free road — even if it is bumpier, more congested, and less luxurious. To them, the price is not worth the benefit.

Along the way, you have to stop periodically and pay another toll to continue. You also have the option of exiting and taking the regular road.

It’s at those tollbooths where many decide to take the exit, and return to the well-traveled and less costly path.

Sometimes this makes sense.

Maybe you’re close to your destination and continuing to pay is not sensible. Or possibly, you’ve realized that the toll road isn’t for you. You prefer the road you’ve known, as opposed to the unfamiliar highway.

What Drives You May Be the Road Itself

When we visit family in Florida, then head over to Disney World, I always take the pay road. For all the reasons I mentioned above, it makes sense. We’re looking forward to getting to the park, and starting our fun. I want the trip itself to be enjoyable, and not full of traffic and hassle.

When you choose the road of the home-based entrepreneur, you are making the decision to take the toll road. The price may be paid in money, sweat, anxiety, and time. Often, the price doesn’t seem worth it.

But to those with the entrepreneurial drive, it’s the road itself that pulls you forward. It’s knowing that you are taking the surest path to your destination, and it’s a path not taken by the majority.

Choosing to pay to ride is a conscious one. You have to take steps and actions to get in the tollbooth line, fish out your cash, and get a ticket. It’s not automatic. It’s an intention.

As you approach each tollbooth along the way keep this in mind…

Exiting the toll road is easy. Make sure you’re 100% sure about why you’re leaving.

You don’t want to end up kicking yourself for getting off when you’re sitting in traffic on the regular road — along with everyone else.


  1. Very nicely written 🙂

    Things always seem to make more sense when they can be relate to real everyday experiences.

    The only thing though that comes to my mind after reading this, is that you need to have a toll road to actually get onto it. I don’t think everyone has the opportunity to choose.

  2. That is so true……you get what you pay for. Sometimes paying a little extra buys a whole lot of extra value. I’ll gladly “pay the toll” once my set of skills are sharpened.

  3. Tony,

    Well said.

    I also realised it might be tougher for a newbie to drive at the speed of the vehicles in the toll road. When you start slowly, you get honked because you are road hogging!

    But these vehicles are not honking at you in frustration. They are helping you to improve. It is this pressure that keeps one improving.

    Soon, you will find yourself up to speed, and making friends who are driving at the speed limits, whizzing across the country, and avoiding the traffic jams on the regular road.

  4. The “cheapest” way to success is to pay. Period.

    I’ve seen people going out of their way (avoid paying a few bucks) to get the job done. And in the end, they are so exhausted to concentrate their next move.

    In the case of your analogy, they forget their objective is to have a good time in Disney World. Speaking of Disney World, if you get there later in the day, you’ll probably be parking at the far end of the entrance. Boy, is that a long walk or what! 🙂

  5. Renée,

    Your comment got me thinking: “The “cheapest” way to success is to pay.”

    Should we pay first class prices for the best? Take personal development seminars, or business advice, for an example.

    Do you think paying the hefty one time course fee for gurus like Anthony Robbins, Jay Abraham or Joe Girard is “saving you money in the long run”?

    There are so many others who run similar type of courses at fractions of the price, but I must admit – the quality isn’t just as good.

  6. Deepali – Terrific point. Which makes it MORE important to utilize the opportunity if you have the chance.

    Anthony – I agree. Usually the results are well worth it.

    Dave – Thanks!

    Kian Ann – Excellent extension of the analogy. I’ve found that other “drivers” on the entrepreneurship road to be very willing to point out directions.

    Ren̩e РVery true! Making the journey more pleasant, and keeping your destination clearly in sight, will make sure you get there (and hopefully not have to park far away :))

  7. Kian Ann,

    I’d love to share my views on “Is high ticket price = best quality?” but this is Tony’s blog whom I’ve great respect for, so I won’t go lengthy here. However, we can share notes on other medium if you like.

    As a fan of Tony Robbins (been to a few of his high ticket seminars), his delivery “is” quite exceptionally good. Does this mean “high ticket price = best quality?” I don’t fully endorse to that notion. I’ve met many outstanding speakers who delivery just as good as top gurus. The problem is that many don’t value “cheaper speakers” as something of great substance. Think about this, would you take as much care of your Honda SUV as you would have on your BMW X3? Does this mean Honda cannot provide the same level of safety and comfort as BMW have? It’s all about image!

    As to saving in the long run, that’s a different ball game here….

    So sorry Tony about my lengthy comment. 🙁

  8. Renée – No problem. I may run it, but this is as much your blog as it is mine 🙂 I prefer conversations over lectures.

    Kian Ann – Thanks for keeping the conversation going.

  9. Jason – Nice call! When I was living in Florida, SunPass was just starting to pick up steam, and mainly from toll road “regulars.” Those who took it occasionally, or tourists, didn’t have it. So I guess you could say that veteran entrepreneurs use an E-Z Pass to fly through the tolls, but still pay, just in a more efficient way. Those just getting going pay tolls as they come 🙂

  10. Me, as well as many people, would prefer the idea of being their own boss rather than be under the control of someone else. I guess it has to do with pride, and a sense of control over your life and the way you are working for it.

  11. Good analogy for getting what you pay for. If you focus on quality then you’re more likely to end up with quality. Too often, we turn to easier or cheaper attempts to accomplish goals and end up frustrated when things don’t work out.

  12. Great analogy! I might add that while some may not have the opportunity to get on the toll road, they will eventually if they really look hard on the map for it.

    We may take different roads to the top of the mountain, but the views all the same once we get there…and an awesome view it is!

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